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A PRAYER FOR THE EARTH by Sandy Eisenberg Sasso


The Story of Naamah, Noah's Wife

by Sandy Eisenberg Sasso & illustrated by Bethanne Andersen

Age Range: 5 - 8

Pub Date: March 1st, 1997
ISBN: 1-879045-60-5
Publisher: Jewish Lights

 In this original story, based on ``ancient texts,'' the day before the flood finds Noah gathering two of each animal, while God has exhorted Noah's wife, Naamah, to gather seeds from every flower and tree: ``Work quickly. The rains begin tomorrow.'' Naamah ties on an apron with many pockets and goes forth to gather spores, seeds, acorns, pine cones, and more, plants them in clay pots and carries them onto the ark to create Naamah's Garden. When the flood waters recede, she spreads her green and growing things over the land: ``Whenever someone digs in the earth and plants a seed, God remembers the Mother of Seed and Naamah's garden continues to grow.'' Sasso (But God Remembered, 1995, etc.) embroiders a brief reference to Noah's wife into an overlong tale that has charm, but lacks the power and beauty of older favorites. The illustrator has created primitive, dreamlike scenes of Naamah, Noah, and the animals (there are no children aboard this ark). Color washes, scratchboard techniques, and diagonal designs capture the motion of trees in the wind, and the whirling of the waters of the flood. (Picture book. 5-8)